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New Mexico Science

Science, climate, weather and water from a New Mexico perspective

How much will the Texas-NM water litigation cost

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With the announcement yesterday that Texas is bringing suit in the US Supreme Court against New Mexico over management of water on the lower Rio Grande, the question today turned to how much this might cost.

My colleague Dan Boyd reports that during a meeting today of the Legislative Finance Committee, several legislators, including Sen. Sue Wilson Beffort, R-Sandia Park, said the state could have to pay for heightened litigation costs of the water lawsuit.

Lawmakers did not estimate what the final price tag could be, but said they expect the state engineer to eventually submit a request for a supplemental appropriation.

Officially, New Mexico has not been formally served with the suit, though anyone with an Internet connection and any interest in New Mexico water law and policy as already read it. The next step will likely be a request for New Mexico to file a response with the court, which could take a couple of months, before the Supreme Court decides whether to take up the case.

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